Features of planting and care for the Black Swan Strawberry
Growing strawberries can be a lucrative business for those who want to do this on a large scale. But it is suitable for amateur gardeners who want to enjoy their favorite variety every year. One of the highest rated varieties to date is the Black Swan. Learn more about it.
According to some sources - the Black Swan was bred in Italy, according to others - in the Netherlands, however, it is considered to be a Dutch variety. By maturity, it refers to medium-late with a fairly long fruiting period. Bushes can bear fruit throughout the summer season. Another important feature of the variety is that if a common berry has a fruiting period, as a rule, lasts up to 6 years, then the Black Swan can bear fruit with proper care up to 7 years. High yields are noted.
The black swan is cold-resistant and transportable, which allows you to export and grow it in many countries and regions. It is unpretentious and can withstand temperatures up to -20 ° C. Temperate countries are ideal for growing this plant. This variety is considered universal - it can be used both raw and for cooking all kinds of jams and desserts.
Characteristics of berries and bush
Berries can reach 70 g (average 30–40 g). They are considered small in comparison with a very close variety - Black Prince (40-50 g). The fruits may taste like cherries, but everyone speaks of them as extremely tasty. The berries are elastic, round-conical, with a strong gloss, dark red (sometimes they may appear black, which probably gave rise to the name of the variety), very beautiful. The pulp is dark, juicy and dense. The aroma gives a little strawberry.
Did you know? Aronia berries are not really black, they are dark red in color. Such a dark shade happens in overripe berries.
Sometimes the fruits are so heavy, and their number is so large that the bush bends under its weight. The bushes are slender and tall, grow up to 60 cm and are very compact; have many peduncles with bluish flowers. The leaves are dark green, oblong-oval with uneven denticles along the edges. The root system lies deep in well-fluffy soil and reaches 50 cm. It gives few mustaches.
- Thanks to the Dutch breeders, the bred variety has a number of distinctive qualities:
- resistance to fungal diseases;
- resistance to frost;
- high productivity;
- long fruiting period;
- variety versatility;
Flowering period, ripening period, yield
In the Black Swan, as in other mid- and late-ripening varieties, the first peduncles appear in May, and the plant begins to bear fruit in June - July. Harvest can be harvested until September. This means that when all other varieties have already bloomed, the gardener can still enjoy fresh berries from the garden.
The variety bears fruit well on fertile lands; on dry soils, yield and fruit size are reduced. Under favorable conditions and the proper use of agricultural technology, the yield from one bush can be up to two kilograms, which is considered a very good indicator for strawberries.
Resistance to diseases and pests
The black swan is resistant to:
Immunity to diseases is achieved by crossing high-quality varieties adapted to local conditions, with fruitful forms of foreign selection, immune or highly resistant to diseases and pests.This allows you to exclude chemical protection from diseases and pests or significantly limit it, which makes it possible to reduce the cost of growing and get environmentally friendly products.
Advantages and disadvantages of the variety
- Of the advantages of the variety, it should be noted:
- The black swan has dense elastic berries that are easy to pick and rarely crumple.
- The variety is not afraid of sudden frosts, which makes it a good candidate for cultivation in the regions of Russia and Ukraine.
- Black Swan is an unpretentious variety and its breeding does not present great difficulties.
- Berries of this variety are considered one of the most beautiful, their glossy surface and dark shade make them attractive not only on the shelves, but also on the home table.
- However, there are a number of disadvantages:
- Late fruiting can be both an advantage and a disadvantage for the gardener. Therefore, the choice of variety must be approached carefully, pre-calculating the timing of planting and collection. The first ripening usually begins in July.
- Arid weather can significantly spoil the crop.
- It is worth noting that the Black Swan gives a mustache only after two years of growth. After their number will gradually decrease. This may be a disadvantage for gardeners who prefer to propagate strawberries with a mustache.
Landing and care
Proper planting and proper care of strawberries is the key to a rich harvest. Next, the basic rules for planting and caring for the Black Swan variety will be considered. With these instructions, even a novice gardener will be able to grow this plant.
Selection and preparation of the landing site
It is important that there is a lot of sunlight on the site and protection against drafts is present. As for the soil, the choice of most gardeners falls on light loam or sandy loam, chernozem. Clay soil, limestones and salt marshes are not suitable.Suitable places where previously grown onions, garlic, various cereals or marigolds. In one area it is not recommended to plant strawberries for more than 3-4 years. Before the next landing, you need a break of 2-3 years. It is necessary to check the soil for acidity: the pH level of 5.5–6.5 will be ideal.
It is necessary to prepare the soil in advance, even before winter: make a digging for every 1 m² of soil:
- 1 kg of humus or 5 kg of manure;
- 100 g of superphosphate;
- 50 g of potassium salt.
Important! The level of groundwater should not exceed a meter mark from the soil surface.
One of the important points is the choice of a good planting material. It is better that the seedling has fibrous roots with processes about 8 cm. The root neck should be about 6 mm in diameter. This is mostly true for purchased material that spent the winter in the cellar. It is good if the seedlings have at least 5 leaves.
There are certain rules for landing a Black Swan:
- The selected bed must first be dug up.
- Dig shallow holes. The distance between the bushes should be 30 cm, and between the rows - 40–70 cm.
- If humus has not yet been added, it is necessary to pour 20 g of this fertilizer into the pits, mixing it with the ground so as not to burn the roots of the seedlings.
- Put the bush in the hole. It is important that the roots do not bend, otherwise the bush will not bear fruit.
- Pour the hole, it should be saturated with moisture. For 1 bush, about half a liter of water, if the earth is dry - 1 liter.
- When the water is absorbed, fill the hole with soil, without covering the outlet (apical kidney) of the bush. It must be flush with the earth, otherwise it will rot. If it is high, it will freeze in the cold.
- Tamp the ground around the bush.
- Trim the mustache and damaged leaves, if any. Do not worry, the young plant will release new ones.
- If the landing is in rows, make furrows between them and water them further. Water should not be poured onto plants to avoid crusting around the bush. She will not let the plant breathe.
- After watering, mulch (cover) the furrows with peat, hay or straw.Otherwise, furrows must be regularly plowed so that moisture persists longer.
Watering and feeding
Seedlings need constant hydration. The proportion is 10-12 liters of water per 1 m². Take water at room temperature. Frequency of watering in mild weather - once every 10-12 days; if the summer is sultry, then increase the amount to 3-4 times a week. In autumn, when the air is dry, enough moisture twice a week. Watering is better in the morning. Until the first flower stalks appear, it is better to use the irrigation method - sprinkling, and after that - drip irrigation.
Important! Excessive moisture in the soil can lead to gray or root rot in the plant.
However, droplets should not fall on the plant. The main elements for feeding both the Black Swan and other strawberry varieties are phosphorus, potassium and nitrogen. Phosphorus provides the growth and strengthening of roots, affects the ripening of full fruits, as well as their number. Potassium and nitrogen are needed to gain green mass, but you can not overdo it, otherwise the plant may not give fruit.
Fertilizers themselves can be divided into three types:
- Organic is all products of animal origin (manure, bird droppings, ash and all kinds of composts).
- Mineral - nitrogen, phosphorus, potassium.
- Micronutrient fertilizers - are used for spraying (magnesium, copper, boron, iodine).
- The first top dressing can be carried out at a soil temperature not lower than +8 ... + 10 ° С, otherwise the root system will not absorb and will not absorb fertilizers. It is at the time of the appearance of new leaves that a plant needs a lot of nitrogen.
- The next time you need to fertilize when the strawberries appear buds.
- The third top dressing is carried out when the strawberry blossoms and bears fruit. Fertilize during this period with potassium and phosphorus so that the berries accumulate mass and are tastier.
- The fourth and last feeding is carried out closer to the fall, when the fruits are already harvested. This allows you to strengthen the plants before winter.
Mulching and cultivation
Coating the seedlings with various materials is called mulching.
This has several advantages:
- water from the soil evaporates more slowly, which reduces the number of irrigations;
- the earth around the strawberry bushes does not heat up;
- weed growth slows down;
- protection from pests such as slugs and snails;
- soil structure improves;
- the fruits do not touch the ground - there is less risk of contracting gray rot.
Important! The needles will gradually increase the acidity of the soil due to the content of tannins. It can be used only on slightly acidic soils.
It is important that the material does not lean against the stems of the plant. A black swan needs frequent loosening, best after rain or when weeds appear, at least seven times during the growing season.
The black swan is resistant to frost and can tolerate up to -25 ° C, however, you still need to take measures to protect the plant before winter. If winter is snowy, then the snow itself will be a protection for plants from the cold - under it the soil does not freeze. If there is no snow, then you can make shelter for the beds - leaves, hay, needles. The greatest danger is that such a shelter can accumulate moisture, because of which the plant will spit and may even die. It is important to mulch and fertilize seedlings before winter.
Video: preparing strawberries and strawberries for winter
Diseases and Pests
Even the Black Swan variety, resistant to the main diseases, is often affected by diseases and pests. Next will be considered the most common of them, with methods for their treatment and prevention.
|Late blight||Highly resistant||The use of chemicals Nitrafen, Kuprosat, Oksikhom. Nettle infusion treatment - 1.5 kg of leaves per 10 liters of water.After a day of insisting, the broth is ready for processing bushes.|
|Fungal diseases (gray, white rot, anthracnose, fusarium)||Highly resistant||Removal of affected plants. Spraying with 0.2% foundationazole or 1% Bordeaux liquid once every 10 days.|
|Powdery mildew||Unstable||Processing bushes with soda ash - 50 g per 10 liters of water. Spraying with iodine solution - 1 mg per 10 l of liquid.|
|Black rot||Unstable||There is no cure. It is necessary to collect and destroy all berries affected by the disease.|
|Root rot||Unstable||Not treated. Plants dig and destroy. The soil is disinfected.|
|Verticillosis (wilt)||Medium resistant||Fungicides will help only at the initial stage. Further - only a change of planting material.|
|Nematode||Highly resistant||Treatment with nematicides. You can also dig a bush, wash the roots from the ground and place in water with a temperature of +47 ... + 55 ° C. Higher temperatures can cause permanent damage to the roots. Processing time - from 5 to 20 minutes.|
|Strawberry mite||Medium resistant||In the southern regions, neoseyulius cucumeris is released on the damaged bushes. Also, drugs "Fufanon", "Kemifos", "Actellik" help from strawberry mites.|
|Aphid||Unstable||Aphids are eaten by birds, ladybugs and wasps. The Zolon, Karate, and Sharpei solutions showed themselves well.|
|Earthy weevil||Unstable||Spraying strawberries with a 0.3% emulsion of 50% malathion, while 30 grams of the drug must be diluted in 10 liters of water.|
|Strawberry Whitefly||Unstable||Well-proven drugs "Shar Pei", "Nurell D", "Karate".|
|Bronze||Unstable||"Calypso" - one of the few drugs that destroy bronzovok.|
There are also general methods for the prevention of diseases and pests:
- Growing only a strong and healthy seedlings of Black Swan, purchased in proven places.
- Cultivation in one place no longer than 2 years, not considering the year of planting. The older the berry, the more diseases.
- The width of the landing strip should not exceed 25-30 cm, because the leaves need sun and an influx of fresh air.
- Permanent weeding from weeds and grass. They provoke most diseases.
Did you know? The world's largest strawberry producer is the US state of California, where up to 1 million tons of these berries are harvested annually. Moreover, the entire world market for strawberries is 4.3 million tons.
Harvesting and storage
It is important to harvest in time - the berries should not become too soft, should not lose shape. If they are going to be transported, it is better to harvest a little unripe. Berries need to be cut together with a cup and a stalk, so they will be stored longer. It is better to use scissors, i.e. when tearing the fruits can crumple. Harvested harvest in wooden boxes in two or three layers - it is no longer recommended that the lower berries do not crumple.It is necessary to sort and sort the berries during the collection process, because pouring the harvested crop is unacceptable - the berries are very easy to crumple. Harvesting is best done in the morning when the dew drops. So the strawberries will still be dense and dry. Harvested crops must be cooled to 0 ° C without delay. At this temperature, he is able to lie in the refrigerator for up to three, maximum four days. Strawberries do not have the property of ripening in storage and do not get better with time, so you need to use it or sell it as soon as possible.
Important! At + 20 ° C, the freshness of the collected strawberries will last only a day.
Also, you can not leave the berries wet. Thanks to these tips, you will be able to grow such a variety as the Black Swan on your own and enjoy it. It can be successfully implemented, delicious and beautiful berries are in demand in the market. He is unpretentious, so that any gardener, following the rules of agricultural technology, will cope with the planting of this variety.